Magazine publishing is a multi-billion dollar industry. What other industry could you find that caters to every niche of the market there is? It is no wonder that careers in magazine publishing would be as prolific as the type of magazine there is. Here’s an overview of the different types of professions for anyone who considers making a career in this industry.
For anyone who has flair for writing, a career in magazine publishing is an easy one. A good start is to work as an intern in a magazine publishing company. Though this is the least fabulous of all the positions, it will provide you training and connections in the industry. It would also be helpful if you would have a folio that is always on hand. One may also start in an entry-level position as an editorial assistant. Aside from writing, rewriting, and copy editing, certain office duties may also be asked. You could then work your way up to being an associate editor, managing editor, executive editor, and finally, an editor-in-chief!
If you are meticulous, could communicate well, and could convince people into an idea or a brand in ways other than writing, then you could have a spot in marketing. Through marketing, you make sure that you make your market hear what the magazine wants them to hear. You must then know how to harmonize the behavior and trends of your market with your publications. This may involve overseeing the sales, the distribution of the publication as well as what kind of articles goes into the magazine.
This is the actual production of the magazine. You must be very keen on the details, the deadline, and the technology that goes with it. Production is used to be associated with machinery and heavy equipment. However now, production goes beyond the tangible paper and ink. Online publishing has changed the way magazines are produced. Production now also involves a great deal of information technology skills.
Other than writing, you could also channel your creativity by being involved with the design of the magazine. Magazines rely heavily on aesthetics, not only for sales but also as an alternative way for expression. The design of the magazine also helps it to turn into a brand. Magazines like Time have a signature red border on its cover while the National Geographic has a yellow border.
Just like any business, magazine publishing also has a concern with sales. However, there is more to it than simply being able to sell. You need to be charismatic, diplomatic and to have integrity. Building good relationships with your clients is important. Aside from people skills, you also need to develop your analytical skills in studying market reports and sales. You have to know how will your ads will be effective for your magazine and its market.
There are many career paths to choose from in the magazine publishing industry. You may have a proven ability for writing or graphic design but a university degree would be, if not mandatory, extremely helpful. Keep in mind that magazine publishing also involves corporate work and that companies do want to present a professional image to the market.
Just make sure that the degree that you’ll be having or is already pursuing is relevant to the industry. If you are still undecided about which field to choose, it is highly recommended that you take an internship in a magazine publishing company. You may not start out glamorous (think Andy Sachs in The Devil Wears Prada) but you’ll definitely learn a lot. In time, you’ll learn the tricks of the trade and you’ll be on your way to the top.